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Unformatted text preview: CHAPTER 1: WHY WE STUDY EARTH Sustainable Development o Development that meets the needs of the present w/o compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (if you eat all the chips, you replace them) Manage natural resources in a way that can continue to provide society w/ adequate energy, water, and raw materials Prepare society for inevitable natural disasters and reduce risk from these natural disasters Repair environment damage already done Maintain habitable environments Natural Resources o Human effects on environment are growing w/ human population o Consuming vast amounts of natural resources o Refers to the water, energy, and raw materials that are available from the natural environment o Resources vs. Reserves Reserves are known supplies of natural resources that could be exploted economically under current conditions Resources include reserves, plus known but currently unrecoverable deposits, plus hypothetical deposits (geologists think may eventually be found) o Renewable vs Nonrenewable Renewable resources are produced by natural processes at a faster rate than the rate it is used (ex. Sunlight) Nonrenewable is when geological processes produce them much slower than we are using them up (ex. Oil, natural gas, and coal) Rates of production between the two differ o Energy Resources Most energy use is eastern half of North America Energy has increased greatly over the last 150 years Over the years oil has become a larger part of our energy Before industrial revolution most of our energy came from burning of wood Industrialization increased demand for energy; today the engine of civilization runs primarily on fossil fuels: coal, oil, and natural gas (methane, CH4); account for 86% of the energy Nuclear power, solar power o Raw Material Resources of us consumption of raw materials was for construction, such as crushed stone, sand and gravel Growing consumption of raw materials has led to a boom in the mining industry, particularly in the mining of metals Minerals are the crystalline components of rocks Metals are found in common rocks and minerals High grade deposits of minerals from which we can extract large amounts of metals are called ores Many of most valuable ores were deposited by hot groundwater circulating in volcanically active regions o Missouri Lead Belt Most concentrated lead deposit in the world o Water Resources 1.46 billion cubic km of water on earth 96% is saltwater; 3% is in glaciers and ice caps Only 1% is liquid freshwater Most of it is in groundwater: contained in rocks beneath the land surface Total freshwater use in U.S. is 6000 liters/person/day Only 250 liters/day is for domestic use!...
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- Spring '11